Summer has finally arrived – hurrah! And with the sunshine comes the long days of the school holidays. For many people this presents longs days (and weeks) of needing to entertain children. The good news is that there will be many places to visit locally and many places to go but what about those days when you just want to stay home?
Lets be honest, as great as days out are they are just not feasible every day both financially and on your energy levels. That’s why I’m sharing a few ideas for adventures and fun that can be found no further away than your own back garden.
Similar to building blocks, balancing stones is as simple as it sounds. If you don’t have any already, have a hunt around your local wood, park or beach for suitable stones and then see how many you can balance. Have more than one child? Then take it in turns; the winner is the person who can balance the most stones at once.
An oldie but a goodie. I have fond memories of doing this myself when I was a child. All you need is a paving slab, some chalk and some creativity. Each slab is a scence to set and a picture to draw.
PAINTING WITH WATER
Pavement art a little too messy for you? Then what about using water? Perfect for sunny days, all you need is a pot of water and a paint brush to be able to paint your own scenes. The great bit about this is there there is no big clear up needed; just let the sun do it’s job and it all dries up ready to start again.
Add in the stones and if your children are anything like mine, then they will have a great time ‘painting’ them with water.
I love this activity as you can make it as simple or as much of a learning experience as you want. Keep it simple by picking items that they can find in the garden and bring back to match them. Take it one step further by looking up what those items are and learning all about them together.
All you need for this is a flower pot or potting box, some compost or mud along with some cut flowers. As much as Henry wanted to get involved, this is one that more for the older children as the idea is to arrange the cut flowers into the pot or box.
Great to talk through the colours or even the types of flowers for the older children; this makes for a great gift for someone who loves flowers and uses up any blooms that are on the way out. If your children are a little older you can even go one step further by potting live flowers and teaching them how to plant them in pots or direct in the ground. You will then be able to spend the rest of the summer watching them bloom.
SET UP CAMP
Nothing beats a den in the back garden when the sun is shining! So grab your tee-pees if you have them and head outside. Or even better, grab some old sheets and make your own! Once done, enjoy your lunch al fresco in your newly built summer house.
GO ON A BEAR HUNT
Hide and seek with a twist, the idea is that you head out into the garden and hide a number of bears. If your kids are young then a simple game of find the bears or hotter / colder will suffice. However, if they are a little older then make the hiding places a little harder and think about putting together a map to help them on their hunt. If you’re feeling particularly creative this can include clues to help them on their way.
DO THE WASHING…..AND PEG IT OUT!
It sounds simple but this is the ultimate in multi-tasking! How many times have you seen your children overlook toys, preferring instead to play with whatever you are doing. Well, get them involved! Sort the clothes into colours, let them help you peg it on the line, let them try folding it. Yes, it will take you 4 times as long to get things done but it’s a great activity and they’ll have fun doing it.
Alternatively, set them up in the back garden with two bowls of water, some soap and a make shift clothes line with string and pegs and let them hand wash their dollys clothes and hang it out on the line alongside the big washing.
JUST GET WET
On a hot day is there anything better than just getting wet and cooling down? Get out the slide, the paddling pool, or in our case this plastic paddling tub. Quick and easy to fill it holds enough water for both kids and for it still to be fun without the need to spend an hour blowing up and filling an entire pool! Fill it up, strip them off, crack open the water friendly toys and just let them play.
Is there anything I’ve missed that you would add to the list? Let me know in the comments below and I’ll add it in giving you credit!
Or perhaps you need some more ideas for the summer holidays, if so then check out these great blogs who have joined in to share their Summer Fun ideas for the school holidays.